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October 2019

PLEASE check in with us before upgrading to macOS 10.15 Catalina

MacOS Catalina 10.15 will make many older applications unusable after you upgrade. Potentially incompatible apps and devices include EHR systems (like MacPractice), digital radiography sensors, and other specialized equipment. Popular software like Microsoft Office 2011 and some Adobe CS6 (and older) applications will no longer work at all with the new operating system.

Beyond fully disabling some apps, keep in mind that the very first version of software like 10.15.0 (before any ‘patches' or updates) can often be buggy, unstable, and incompatible with the software you use every day. Unless there is a compelling reason to upgrade, in general we advise against upgrading at this moment.

Here’s how to find out which apps you currently have that will be no longer work after upgrading to macOS Catalina 10.15:

https://www.macworld.com/article/3393161/how-to-find-out-if-your-mac-software-is-32-or-64-bit.html

Once you have verified that you can safely upgrade to 10.15, here are some new features that might benefit you:

• Better Data Protection: The operating system runs in a dedicated read-only system volume that prevents anything from overwriting or subverting critical files. Apps also have to be “notarized” by Apple, which means they have been checked for known security issues.

• Mail App: Mail is changing its classic layout to a column layout with a preview of selected, but unopened emails. Mail can now block certain email addresses. It also can mute long email threads and lets you unsubscribe from mail newsletters more easily.

• Notes App: Notes will now have better search options, a gallery view, and folder sharing capacity with a “read-only” sharing option.

Running out of space?

If you get this message it likely means your computer’s storage is above 85% capacity, and you might experience issues with your computer until the drive gets 100% full—at which point your computer becomes unusable.To find out how much storage space you have (macOS 10.12 and later), go to the Apple icon at the very top left of your screen and click “About This Mac” and then select the Storage tab at the top. The Storage window will show a Manage… button. From there you will be able to see which files, folders and applications are taking up the most space on your drive.

For more complete instructions check out this article:

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT206996

Network Attached Storage (NAS): The future of onsite file sharing

Apple has been dedicating less resources to the development and maintenance of Mac file sharing functionality in newer operating systems. Because cloud-based file sharing has been gaining popularity, fewer Mac users have been implementing local file sharing using Mac servers.

However, for many users with large files, or those who need to comply with privacy and security regulations (like HIPAA), an onsite file sharing solution still makes sense. After evaluating and testing a number of different file sharing solutions, we have chosen to partner with Synology.

This company specializes in NAS devices, which are basically boxes full of hard drives that connect to the network in your office. Their NASs provide the exact same functionality you have experienced using a Mac server to store and access files.

Their hardware provides excellent compatibility with both Mac and Windows computers. Further, Synology has been a favorite of IT professionals for almost 20 years because of their products’ reliability, value, and ease of setup and use.

August 2019

Why We Have Partnered with Phone.com

Favarger Consulting can now procure, install, and manage business phone systems through a partnership with phone.com! We can simplify your technology even further by eliminating the need for a phone system specialist and dedicated phone hardware. Our VoIP phone offering just requires just an internet connection. It is also HIPAA compliant!

Take a look at phone.com’s features, which cover all the needs of a modern business, like multiple extensions, voicemail, conference calling, and phone trees. There are also more advanced features such as text messaging, cell phone, and email integration.

Once your business phone system is set up, you can add or modify features yourself, or with our help. This partnership will make your business communications easier, and better,
and will likely save you money. Schedule a phone bill review with us today by Emailing us!

Beware: Some Applications Won’t Work With New Mac Operating System

We know you have seen this warning many times already. What does it mean? This September macOS Catalina (10.15) will launch and won’t allow 32-bit applications to run, such as Office 2011, some Adobe CS6 (and older) apps, and many others. The purpose of this is to increase computing efficiency by updating the system to a standard of all-64-bit processing. To find out which applications on your computer will be affected do the following:
  1. Click on the Apple icon in the upper right hand corner of the screen.
  2. On the drop down menu click on “About This Mac”. A new window will appear.
  3. Click the “System Report” box on the lower left of the window. (This is under the tab you start out with, the “Overview” tab). A new window will appear.
  4. On the left side of the window, scroll down and click on “Applications” under “Software”. A list of all applications will appear on the right within the window.
  5. If you scroll right in the list you will find a column labelled “64 Bit (Intel)”, under that it will say for every application you have whether it is 64-bit “yes” or 32-bit “no”.

If you want to use a 32-bit application, either update it to 64-bit if possible or do not install the macOS Catalina upgrade. Any current software you are still getting updates for will likely be updated to 64-bit. Old 32-bit software that is not being updated will not work at all on the new operating system. You will either have to buy a newer version, or find an alternative.

MACPRACTICE CLIENTS: this is your annual warning to not upgrade the operating system (High Sierra 10.13 to Catalina 10.15, for example) without consulting with us first!

macOS Mojave 10.14.6, the most current version, still runs 32-bit apps, and will still be receiving security updates for the next two years. So, you have two years to figure out what to do about this!

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